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'Old Blood and Guts' remembered

Millions of Americans will be remembering “Old Blood and Guts” next week when military bloggers make note of Gen. George S. Patton Jr.’s life. It was 63 years ago Dec. 21 when America’s distinguished and controversial WWII Army officer passed away, not on the battlefield, but as the result of injuries sustained in a freak auto accident near Mannheim, Germany, on December 9, 1945.

Patton was being treated for a severe neck injury at the 130th Station Hospital in Heidelberg when he died four days before Christmas 1945. He was buried three days later, December 24, 1945, in the American Cemetery at Hamm, Luxembourg.

A superb compendium of Patton’s career, including links to his speeches, diary, famous quotes, photos, posters, articles, comics, newspaper reports, the movie “Patton,” website, national museum and much more, has been assembled by Patton expert Dave Logan at his ThirdWaveDave.blogspot.com site.

Brian Kilmeade, Fox & Friends television personality and radio host, in his book “It’s How You Play the Game: The Powerful Sports Moments That Taught Lasting Values to America’s Finest,” noted that Patton’s failures motivated him even more to succeed.

Patton’s great-grandniece Patti Patton-Bader is keeping the family name and tradition alive with her ongoing support for our troops. She founded the international troop support organization SoldiersAngels.org and for her effort has been recognized by NBC as America’s Favorite Mom.

Keeping track of your debt.

In 1989, real estate magnate Seymour Durst installed the National Debt Clock near Times Square. But instead of minutes and hours, this clock calculates our federal debt, using figures from the U.S. Treasury. The clock serves as a reminder to everyone who passes that the government owes more to the public in the form of Treasury bills and savings bonds, and more to itself in the form of money it borrows from one pot to spend on another with each passing single day.

When Durst installed the clock, the debt was $2.7 trillion. With our national debt now cracking $10 trillion, the clock has run out of room for the additional digits required to display our ballooning deficit. The Durst organization plans to update the clock next year by adding two digits so it can track debt up to a quadrillion dollars.

The actual debt estimate – including all our government’s obligations like Social Security and Medicare – actually totals more than $57 trillion. The figures are updated daily from the U.S. Treasury and the population data from the U.S. Census.

If you have the stomach for it, you can track our national debt with one of several U.S. national debt counter widgets designed for your website. The widget displays a rolling counter of the current national debt, the debt per citizen, and the current U.S. population.

Or check out the Peter G. Peterson Foundation National Debt Twitter. By following the national debt on Twitter, you’ll receive a daily tweet of the national debt as reported by the Treasury Department.

Blip me!

When a microblogging service for music aficionados called Blip.fm was launched last May, no one in the company expected it to rise above the status of an experiment. But before long, Blip.fm’s traffic began to eclipse that of its main site (which provides an altogether different service for bands that want to cultivate their fan base).

As a result of its popularity, Blip.fm developers are working on a program that will allow you to install it into your own web page, where you’ll be able to create playlists, post blips, see favorite DJs, and retrieve member information. If you’d like to gain access to the API (still in private beta), email [email protected] and give a brief description of what you intend to use it for.

The diagnosis

Bedside manner is everything, right? Not unless you’re House. Dr. Gregory House, that is. Portrayed by actor Hugh Laurie, the acerbic, brutally honest, antisocial but brilliant diagnostician and infectious disease specialist is not known for his sympathetic demeanor. Despite that or because of it, “House” is a popular weekly episodic medical drama series that solves mysteries where the villain is a medical malady and the hero is an irreverent, controversial doctor who trusts no one, least of all his patients.

If you’re new to House, you’ve missed some episodes or you want to rewatch your favorites, here’s your home for House. Watch full episodes and videos, gallery, features, cast bios, and show recaps.

Speaking of viral, here are 2008’s videos

Where is Matt? The No. 1 Viral video of 2008 takes you around the world. To view it and nine others in the Top 10 Viral Videos of 2008, click here.

To see the Top 10 of Everything, click here.

The Armchair Commentary also has assembled the top 10 DVDs for kids and families.

A social phenomenon

Meet Matt Zuckerberg, the kid who turned down a billion bucks. Are you one of the millions who are on Facebook? Do you know how it began? A little history: Facebook’s growth in the fall of 2007 was staggering. Over a million new users signed up every week, 200,000 daily, totaling over 50 million active users.

Facebook received 40 billion page views a month. Long gone were the days of Facebook as a social network for college students. Eleven percent of users are over the age of 35, and the fastest growing demographic is users over 30. Facebook has also seen huge growth internationally; 15 percent of the user base is in Canada.

Facebook users’ passion, or addiction, to the site is unparalleled: more than half use the product every single day and users spend an average of 19 minutes a day on Facebook. Facebook is sixth most trafficked site in the U.S. and top photo sharing site with 4.1 billion photos uploaded. Millions have been invested. Read more here.

Book-lover’s delight!

Shelfari is the premier social network for people who love books.

Create a virtual shelf to show off your books, see what your friends are reading and discover new books – all for free!